There are many signs of new life and hope in and around our church family this Spring. We continue to welcome new friends into our community – people with diverse gifts and helpful spirits. It is encouraging to get to know one another and to see where God may be leading us together. On Easter Sunday we celebrated the resurrection of Jesus Christ at four wonderful services and gathered with over a thousand persons over the course of the day. As one good friend has observed, “Easter is God’s way of teaching a congregation its future.” The family and friends who shared in that day think of our congregation as their church home. It is a gift and a privilege to see the impact we are making in people’s lives.
As one such example, the first weekend in May brings with it the annual San Pedro-Peninsula CROP Walk where walkers and sponsors will help raise funds to address hunger needs both near to home and around the world. And the Spring Blood Drive follows on the Friday and Monday of the Mother’s Day weekend. We will again be helping fill up the reserves at Torrance Memorial Medical Center and hope that you can help share the gift of life with others in our community. Thank you to the Health and Wellness Committee for your efforts in making it easy and painless!
Our youth are raising funds for their participation in this year’s Sierra Service Project. Their bake sales are always a hit and the Mother’s Day flowers are a lovely way to honor someone important in your life AND help our youth share in a generous mission together. The All Church Family Camp is also coming up soon, and I know that many of you look forward to that special time at Camp Lazy W over the Memorial Day weekend.
Thyra and I are also looking forward to our daughter Hannah’s completion of her M.A. in Literary Translation from the University of Rochester. We will be back there with her for a week or so this month. It looks as though she will be staying back east for now, working in Rochester and finishing the translation of a contemporary French novel (for pay!). Her harp playing is now more for her own enjoyment than professional purposes. Her love of literature seems to have moved ahead of her gifts in music for now.
By now many of you know of the move that Lisa Williams will be making to serve as a Local Pastor at San Pedro UMC. This has been the result of stirring in Lisa’s spirit over a number of years and we wish her every success in her new venture. I look forward to having her as a colleague in ministry in the South Bay, in a role slightly different from working with her on the same team at RHUMC. As this change comes to some of us unexpectedly (and to many of us unwillingly!) we give thanks for the steadfastness of God’s grace in each of our lives, and in the life we share together as a family of faith. I know that we give thanks for all she has done and offer our blessing for what lies ahead.